ANZPT Perth: Nik nails 'em on day 1A

An historic day of poker has concluded at Burswood Casino with 46 players progressing to day two in the first PokerStars.net ANZPT event ever played in Perth, Western Australia.

Appropriately, it was a local player, Nik Lackovic, who finished atop the chip count with 104,625. He leads Melbourne's Kelvin Beattie (90,125) from two other Perth players - Jimmy Wong (77,925) and Aleks Lackovic (69,575) - and 2009 Aussie Millions $100k Hold'em Challenge champion David Steicke (61,300), who gave the field a two-hour start.

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Jeff Lisandro added some genuine star power to the day 1A field

Wong's chips came courtesy of the last hand of the day when he shoved with K-7 chasing a flush against the flopped two-pair, aces and eights, of Sean Dunwoodie. Wong made his flush on the turn, and shot into the top five as a result. Dunwoodie remains in good shape on 53,800.

Other notables who'll return on Friday included Matthew Kirk (49,475), ANZPT Adelaide winner Rennie Carnevale (48,050), past Sapphire Series winner Lynn Brooks (47,200), Lizzie Clarke (38,450), Tim English (29,275), Jovo Scekic (27,350), Hugh Cohen (22,450) and Singapore's Ivan Tan (16,660).

Australian Poker Hall of Fame Legend and Burswood poker ambassador Jeff Lisandro was rarely over the chip average but remains in contention with 20,100. A total of six PokerStars Qualifiers and two PokerStars Players were among the 46 survivors.

Players to fall by the wayside on day 1A included Tom Grigg, Julian Cohen, Peter Aristidou, Nino Marotta, Amanda De Cesare, Octavian Voegele and Daniel Neilson.

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Family affair: Nik Lackovic (above) finished at the head of the chip count with brother Aleks fourth overall

We'll be back at Burswood Casino from 12.30pm local time tomorrow - assuming tonight's St Patrick's Day festivities don't go off the rails - for day 1B of the PokerStars.net ANZPT Perth Main Event, where the field will include PokerStars.net Team Australia's Eric Assadourian, Grant Levy, Tony Hachem and Emad Tahtouh along with Team Asia's Bryan Huang.